The Confluence

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Last Friday night, I settled in for some serious lesson planning – year 9 poetry.


I stressed over the perils of engaging twenty-five disinterested teens with Donne, Owen and Frost.  I pictured their bored little faces.  I visualised myself, jaded, cynical.

There was substance abuse.


When I was popping my own pimples, it was to the likes of Nirvana and Smashing Pumpkins.  I read books as a kid.

I liked words.




Teens these days?  I don’t know…


It’s as though they’re on an intravenous drip, administered hourly doses of such watered-down, utter shit.

Non-specific, one-size-fits-all, shit.

Leave your brain at the door, don’t think, just follow, shit.



They don’t even know what it is they like because they are never left alone.

To just be.  To immerse themselves.  In words alone.



It’s concerning.

So I’m shaking up poetry.

To make more meaning.  To stay relevant.





On my quest, this is who I found last Friday night.

Luka Lesson.

If you can find two minutes and twenty seconds of alone time, I suggest you press play.




It’s satisfying when something stays with you long after it’s ended.



Robo X

About Robomum

I blog after my kids go to sleep. It takes a while. View all posts by Robomum

16 responses to “The Confluence

  • Lydia C. Lee

    I had to look up the meaning of confluence…that’s telling ;). It’s great that they’ve made poetry cool again.

  • ann

    Wow that was so cool. I am not overly fond of poetry as a rule but that was awesome.

  • Clair

    Do modern day pop musicians even write poetic lyrics? It’s all baby & sexy & nothing with any meaning or soul. Good on you for finding this guy, he certainly has a fire in the belly.

  • Lizzy - Muddle-Headed Mamma

    Oh I hear you on every account 🙂 I’ve been an English teacher, taught year nine, taught poetry (but never poetry to year 9s, always only year 8s and 10s). If I’d tried poetry with the 9s I had in the last school I was at I think it would have started a rebellion! My sound’s not working at the moment on my computer, but I will definition come back and listen to the video when it is; I love poetry. Rap is always a good way of getting teens interested in phyme I think, I used to use music in general quite a lot to show them how poetry relates to their own lives. Limericks can be fun to do with them too. I also showed them some film clips which them poems in them then we’d analsye the poem, like ‘Funeral Blues’ in ‘Four Weddings and a Funeral’. Good luck with the 9s and the colossal task you have ahead of you! 🙂

    • Robomum

      I’ll definitely be showing them Funeral Blues. There are many versions out there on YouTube. I just want to open their minds a little. I’m in the process of creating a PowerPoint that covers lots of different styles of poetry. Your suggestions are great!

  • Emily

    Words are so powerful. And important. Let’s burn all the providers of boring listy crap!

  • Lee-Anne

    a great post. I heard this poet on ABC radio – he really knows how to engage a teen audience. If only we didn’t have to teach to the syllabus – trying to get senior students into WWI war poetry is so demoralising…

    I know a terrific poem for Year 9 – ‘The Fly’ by Karl Shapiro – “O hideous little bat, the size of snot…” It’s bursting with imagery (most of it gross!)

    • Robomum

      Checking out that poem just as soon as I stop blogging… Thanks for the suggestion. I know what you mean about the syllabus. We get bored sometimes – I can only imagine their boredom…

  • Grace

    Poetry is the shizz, man. I remember reciting an Indonesian poem for my uni’s open day. I wasn’t quite sure how it was going to pan out but on the actual day, I actually loved it.
    This man is amazing! I can see me sitting at the front, Pinot Noir in one hand and a cigarette in the other, soaking this all in.
    “Us became you again
    And we…became me”
    That’s the shizz.

  • Emily @ Have A Laugh On Me

    Such powerful music when we were teens, it used to make my soul sing, cry and half of what I wrote was when I was listening to Smashing Pumpkins, still adore them – get it!! And just got recent album. Hope school holidays are going well x

  • Robomum

    Of course I get it! I know every generation thinks their musinc was the shiz but our generation… It spoke man… School’s good. X

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